August 25, 2018 9:05 am
Updated: August 27, 2018 11:27 am

With mock meat on the rise, here’s how to survive on a vegan diet

WATCH: Everything you need to know about a vegan diet

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The world of plant-based mock meat is quickly taking over the vegan market, but many experts agree that these foods aren’t as healthy as they sound.

Read more: Vegetarian and vegan ‘meats’ are more popular than ever, but are they good for you?

In the above video, we hear from Toronto-based vegan chef Doug McNish, who’s been “veganizing” classic dishes for over a decade.

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“Fifteen years ago, vegan cheese tasted like plastic — it was horrible,” he said.

“These days, you can go anywhere and get amazing vegan food.”

One of McNish’s famous dishes is a croque madame sandwich. His go-to meat substitute is seitan, made from the protein of wheat.

McNish has also found a way to create a vegan version of over-easy eggs using a molecular gastronomy process called spherification.

These types of innovations can make veganism a lot more appealing, but are mock meats better for you than the real thing?

The Beyond Burger, now available in Canada at A&W, is made of proteins from peas, rice, mung beans and beet juice, yet it has almost as many calories as the McDonald’s Big Mac.

And while all these examples of the so-called faux-flesh revolution are helping take #meatlessmondays in a new direction, most nutritionists insist that meal-planning is key.

“These meats and faux sausages, as innovative as they are, to give you the flexibility to feel like you’re having a burger or a hot dog, I think they’re OK on occasion but they’re still very processed forms of plant-based foods,” dietitian Sabah Mirza told Global News.

READ MORE: The hottest trends in vegetarian food

She added that while it is possible for the body to thrive on a vegan diet, there are a number of nutrients that are more difficult to get.

What’s the best the way to make up for these deficiencies?

Watch the video above to learn more about the possible risks, some easy solutions, details on the vegan movement and why so many are converting.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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